Suction Side Pool Cleaner

A suction side pool cleaner is designed to operate using the pressure created by the pool filter pump in your salt water system.  The cleaner is attached to the intake line where water is drawn from your pool into the circulation system beneath the skimmer or a to the skimmer itself by using a special attachment.  In some pools there is a dedicated suction cleaner line that is plumbed separate from the skimmer.

suction side pool cleanerBaracuda Suction Side Automatic Pool Cleaner

The main advantage of suction cleaners is that they don’t require a separate booster pump because they use the suction from the filter pump.  Another advantage is that a timer isn’t required since they operate simultaneously with your pool system so you know that any time your pool system is running, your vacuum is silently keeping your pool clean. 

On the other spectrum is whats called a pressure side pool cleaner or pressure side cleaner.  It operates using pressure from the pool water being forced back into your pool by your existing system.

The other type called a pool cleaner robot operates completely separate from the pool pump system and uses electrical power to operate its vacuum.  They are the future in pool cleaning and offer complete pool cleaner with little or no attention required.

How a Suction Side Pool Cleaner Works

The suction created by the filter pump when it’s operating, creates the vacuum pressure and propels the cleaner along the pool floor. The cleaner moves in a random pattern or in some models a more calculated pattern. Debris is vacuumed from your pool bottom where it enters your pool circulation system. Large debris is collected in the pump basket of your filter pump and smaller debris is collected further along in the filter.

It’s important to consider the required pressure for different suction pool cleaners. In general, a ¾ horsepower pool water pump is adequate to operate most cleaners. The vacuum is dependant on the suction created by the pump. If your pool system is not in optimum condition either due to a clogged pump basket or a pool water filter that needs cleaning, your cleaners effectiveness will be affected. It’s important to note that too much suction can affect the cleaners’ ability to move along the floor.

Suction side pool cleaners are a great option for pool owners because they can be added to just about any pool system. They are powered by the filter pump and work in tandem with the rest of the devices without the use of a separate pool timer. 

A booster pump, timer and separate line aren’t required. A booster pump is required with most pressure side pool cleaners to enable enough pressure to work properly. A timer isn't required because they work when the existing pump is operating. They also have less moving parts, which means less repair and maintenance.

It’s important to check and empty your pump basket often as all debris is vacuumed into the skimmer and pump basket. They need to be kept clean and clear and its also important to maintain a clean filter. Some suction cleaners have problems with obstacles like stairs and drains. There are optional equipment additions designed for this purpose.

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